Pelican River Watershed District
"Protecting Our Lakes, Rivers & Streams..."
Aquatic invasive species FOUND in the Pelican River Watershed District include:
- Curly-leaf pondweed
- Flowering Rush
- Purple Loosestrife
Aquatic Invasive SPECIES OF CONCERN (not yet known to exist in the PRWD) include:
- Zebra mussel
- Eurasion Watermilfoil
- Spiny Water Flea
- Bighead Carp
- Rusty Crayfish
For more information:
Department of Natural Resources
Invasive Species Program Supervisor
Pelican River Watershed District
Becker County COLA
PO Box 1043
Detroit Lakes, MN 56502
WHAT ARE ZEBRA MUSSELS?
Zebra mussels are a finger-nail sized non-native species that attach to any solid surface in water -- boats, wet suits, decoys, personal watercratfs, tubes, docks, water intake pipes. Adults are 1/4 to 1-1/2 inches long and have razor-sharp D-shaped shells with alternating yellow and brownish colored stripes. Some of the lakes they are found in include, but are not limited to; Pelican Lake, Rose Lake, Lake Lizzie, Prairie Lake, Gull Lake, Mille Lacs, Lake Minnetonka and Prior Lake. Populations of these animals increase rapidly, and once established, they can not be eliminated. Zebra mussels forever change Minnesota's lakes and our way of life by ruining fishing, littering beaches with sharp shells, and destroy local economies by driving down property values and forcing tourists to go elsewhere in sear of summer fun at the lakes.
Currently there are no enviormentally safe control methods to kill zebras mussels once they become established in a water body. A single female can reproduce up to one million microscopic juveniles (called verligers) in a single season. Minnesota's long cold winters do not eradicate them. For a full list of infested waters (not just zebra mussels) see the following link.
PREVENT THE SPREAD
We need to work together to stop the spread of zebra mussels to other lakes and rivers. Zebra mussels attach to boats, nets, docks, swim platforms, boat lifts, and can be moved on any of these objects. They also can attach to aquatic plants, making it critical to remove all aquatic vegitation before leaving a lake. Microscopic larvae may be carried in water contained in bait buckets, bilges or any other water moved from an infested lake or river.
- Remove any visible mud, plants, fish or animals before transporting equipment
- Eliminate water from equipment before transporting
- Clean and dry anything that came in contact with water (Boats, trailers, equipment, clothing, dogs, etc.)
- Never release plants, fish or animals into a body of water unless they came out of that body of water.
MINNESOTA ZEBRA MUSSEL LAWS
It is illeagal to travel on a public road with zebra mussels attached to a boat or trailer, or to have live zebra mussels in your possession. It is also illegal to launch or place a watercraft or trailer into uninfested waters of the state with attached visible zebra mussels. It is also illegal to travel on a public road with aquatic vegetation on your boat or trailer, due in part to the fact that zebra mussels can attach to vegetation. You are also required to drain any water from your boat (live wells, bilges and bait buckets) when leaving zebra mussel infested waters.
WHAT SHOULD LAKESHORE AND BOAT OWNERS DO?
Zebra mussels will encrust hard surfaces - boat hulls, mooring buoys, inside mechanisms, water toys, docks and lifts. There are several precautions boat owners may take.
- When swimming or wading, wear protective footwear to minimize cutting your feet, as zebra mussels shells are razor-sharp.
- Remove your irrigation intakes from the water when not in use.
- If possible, keep your boat and motor out of water (when not in use) tom minimize the encrustation of zebra mussels
- If it is not possible to store your boat out of water, contact a marina to inquire about protective paints and annual maintenance.
- Run your boats long enough to reach operating temperatures. The immature zebra mussels are very sensitive to heat, so a hot engine will kill them as they are flushed through the cooling system. Drain all water reservoirs after each use.
- If you take your boat out of an infested lake or river to visit another lake or river, thoroughly clean your boat and trailer inside and out and let it dry for at least five days. Scrape off any encrustations, wash with high pressure, hot water, drain and dry all water reservoirs.
- If you sell used docks, structures or water toys, be sure they are decontaminated and cleaned before they leave the area.
- Join the DNR zebra mussel citizen monitoring program. Learn more on the DNR website.
InForum Article 8/8/2011 -
KVLY Valley News Live
The Hitchhikers of Lakes Country (summary) (The lake referenced in this video is Pelican Lake in Otter Tail County)
KFGO radio interview with Terry Kalil (Becker County COLA) 6/03/2011-In regards of Pelican Lake (Otter Tail County) Decontamination.
PRWD is Now Using Virkon Aquatic as Disinfectant for Aquatic Hitchhikers
Evaluation of Virkon Aquatic Toxicity and Application to Disinfect Invasive Mollusk - Click Here
Western Chemical Inc. Website - Virkon Aquatic - Click Here
Virkon Aquatic Fact Sheet - Click Here
Zebra Mussel Samplers
The Pelican River Watershed District has constructed zebra mussel samplers to be placed in area lakes to monitor and detect early on any zebra mussel presence. Currently our District does not have zebra mussels in our lakes. Our goal is to prevent the spread of zebra mussels if they do invade our lakes and rivers. The zebra mussel samplers are located on Detroit Lake, Lake Sallie, Lake Melissa, Long Lake, Pearl Lake, and Floyd Lake.
Invasive mussels: Damage Lakes & Rivers!
When zebra mussels invade our local waters they filter plankton causing dense stands of vegetation to grow deeper (e.g. milfoil and curly-leaf); Filtering reduces food for small fish. Feces and dead shells accumulate on the lake bed, on shore this causes odors and cuts and scrapes from sharp shells. (summarized from MnDNR website)
Click here: YouTube - The threat of invasive mussels in Utah and the West
Sternberg's Presentation: Comprehensive on ZM and QM. Click HERE to view.
AIS check list: Click HERE
Zebra Mussels May Use Your Boat to Invade Additional Waters!
Once a boat has been in infested waters, it could carry invasive mussles. These mussels can spread to new habitats on boats trailered by commercial haulers or the public. Zebra mussels attach to boats and aquatic plants carried by boats. These mussels also commonly attach to bait buckets and other aquatic recreational equipment. An adult female zebra mussels can release up to a million eggs in a year. Please take precautions outlined in the attached flyer to help reduce the chance that zebra mussels will spread from your boat or equipment to uninfested areas. For more information on Zebra Mussels please go to http://www.100thmeridian.org/.
(1) Watercraft dry time indicator: http://www.100thmeridian.org/Emersion.asp
(2) Decontamination and inspection videos:
The Fight is On to Stop Zebra Mussels Before They Reach Becker County Lakes
Detroit Lakes, MN May 9, 2011 -- While the May 14, 2011 fishing opener may be a red-letter day on anglers’ calendars across Minnesota and in surrounding states, it is also circled on the calendars of many Becker County agencies, lake associations, fishing organizations and concerned citizens. The 2011 walleye fishing opener is critical to these groups working to educate anglers and boaters about the risks associated with zebra mussels and other aquatic invasive species.
In Detroit Lakes and across Becker County, all eyes are on nearby Pelican Lake in Otter Tail County where zebra mussels were first discovered in late 2009. “With many anglers moving between lakes -- sometimes three or four times a day -- it’s imperative that much more aggressive prevention efforts are employed,” said Dick Hecock, president of the Becker County Coalition of Lake Associations (COLA). “The future of our lakes, beaches and tourism economy is at stake in this fight.” Hecock is also senior advisor to the Pelican River Watershed District (PRWD), the lead agency studying and monitoring the spread of zebra mussels and other invasive species including the flowering rush on Little Detroit Lake that has affected the city’s public beach. “All boaters and anglers simply have to change the way we use watercraft if we are to have a fighting chance of protecting Becker County’s lakes,” Hecock continued.
Carrie Johnston, president of the Detroit Lakes Regional Chamber of Commerce, shares Hecock’s concerns. “Tourism is a key component of our regional economy. If our lakes become contaminated with invasive species, every business suffers, not just those with obvious connections to fishing,” she explained. “We look forward to welcoming our summer friends back to the lakes to enjoy boating, fishing, swimming and all of the recreational opportunities we enjoy here. But, we can’t fight this fight without the full cooperation and support of everyone who transports a boat or bait between Minnesota lakes.”
Hecock and Johnston share a concern that not all anglers are aware of the risks zebra mussels pose, the specific laws designed to halt the spread, and with the steps boaters need to take as they leave one lake to transport a boat to another. To read more click HERE.